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Rodimus
Transformers character
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First appearance Transformers: Generation 1
Voiced by Judd Nelson (Film, Transformers: Titans Return)
Dick Gautier (television series)
Ted Schwartz (Five Faces of Darkness only)
Ben Pronsky (Transformers: Combiner Wars)
Paul Dobson
Omar Sy
Travis Willingham
{Japanese} Hiroya Ishimaru (television series)
Kenshō Ono (Q Transformers: Mystery of Convoy)
Ryōtarō Okiayu
Yōhei Tadano
Information
Aliases Hot Rod, Rodimus Prime, Rodimus Major
Affiliation Autobot
Partner Firebolt/Sparks
Ultra Magnus
Optimus Prime
Kup
Scrapheap
Offshoot
Bumblebee
Hound
Sqweeks
Alternate modes Dome Zero, Futuristic Race Truck, Ford GT
Hot rod race truck
Sports Car
Cybertronian Muscle Car
Steyr-Daimler-Puch 2000 truck
Citroën DS
Lamborghini Centenario LP770-4 Spec V

Rodimus Prime is a fictional robot superhero character from the Transformers franchise. He was formerly known as Hot Rod and in The Transformers: The Movie, he was reformatted into Rodimus Prime when he received the Autobot Matrix of Leadership and assumed the role of the movie's protagonist. Hasbro has used the names Autobot Hot Rod, and Rodimus as replacements for later characters, due to trademark issues with the name Hot Rod. His alternate mode varies between depictions, but usually possesses a red, yellow, and silver paint job.

Transformers: Generation 1

Hot Rod is often portrayed as energetic, yet brash and headstrong, with an overwhelming self-confidence that borders on arrogance. As Rodimus Prime, leader of the Autobots, he is significantly more mature, physically powerful and instilled with the wisdom of the previous holders of the Matrix of Leadership. In a reversal of his behavior as Hot Rod, Rodimus is plagued by lack of confidence in his role as Autobot commander and often doubts his own decisions, feeling both inferior to and in some ways living in the shadow of the previous leader of the Autobots, Optimus Prime.

Hot Rod's tech specs list him as an Autobot Cavalier, while as Rodimus Prime, he is listed as an "Autobot Protector" - unlike Optimus Prime's, which directly states "Autobot Commander". A commercial for the toy hinted at his ascension, but pitted him against Cyclonus and Scourge instead of Galvatron, who was his chief adversary in the animated series.

Hot Rod and Rodimus have displayed the ability to shoot lasers out of their forearms, as well as having a retractable saw blade and having a short circuit ability, which short circuits the opponent to dust.

Animated series

Hot Rod has a youthful attitude, and serves as an older brother figure to Daniel Witwicky, son of Autobot ally Spike Witwicky. He has a sort of mentor-student relationship with the veteran Autobot Kup. He was also good friends with Springer and Arcee. Later in life, he temporarily bears the Autobot Matrix of Leadership and becomes Rodimus Prime (Rodimus Convoy in Japan), and new leader of the Autobots.

Hot Rod first appeared in the American animated series during the events of The Transformers: The Movie (as a main protagonist), where he was one of the many Autobots stationed at Autobot City. Hot Rod is fishing with Daniel Witwicky. Daniel and Hot Rod travel to observation point to witness the arrival of an Autobot shuttle from Cybertron, only to see a hole in the shuttle. The ship had been previously hijacked by Decepticon forces led by Megatron, killing all crew onboard.

Hot Rod opens fire on the Decepticons on board through the damaged hull, having their cover blown, the Decepticons return fire, and start their attack on the city early, first by destroying the observation platform. Hot Rod and Daniel survive the platform collapse and along with Kup escape back to Autobot City.

Hot Rod fights in the battle of Autobot City and directly intervenes in the fight between Megatron and Autobot leader, Optimus Prime. Due to this intervention, Prime is mortally wounded. As Prime dies, the Matrix of leadership passes to Ultra Magnus, but the pass is fumbled and Hot Rod catches it, handing it to Magnus.

After the events of the first battle, Hot Rod flees the city with Kup and the Dinobots as Galvatron, attacks the city in a second onslaught. After meeting up with other Autobots after a series of adventures on the planets Quintessa and Junk, Hot Rod and the other Autobots travel to Cybertron to help save it from being eaten by Unicron. Grappling Galvatron inside Unicron's body, Hot Rod grabs the Autobot Matrix of Leadership hearing the voice of Optimus Prime, "Arise, Rodimus Prime". The power of the Matrix reforms Hot Rod into Rodimus Prime and destroys Unicron.

Post the actions of the film, in season three of the animated series, Rodimus immediately finds himself and the Autobots targeted by the Quintessons, who lure him to their planet of Quintessa and detonate it in hopes of destroying the Matrix. Rodimus and the Autobots survive yet Rodimus allows himself to allow his life-force to enter the Matrix, discovering the Quintessons were the Transformers creators.

The Autobots become peacekeepers in the galaxy. Rodimus chairs the peace conference between the planets of Xetaxxis and Lanarq. Rodimus is among the Autobots who have their minds transferred into synthetic human forms by crime lord Victor Drath, who uses their Transformer bodies to commit crimes. While Ultra Magnus, Arcee and Springer tackle this problem, Rodimus returns to Drath's compound where, through a combined effort, Drath is brought to justice and the Autobots regain their bodies.

Hot Rod appears a few more times: first as he gives the Matrix to a Quintesson-controlled Optimus Prime. Losing the Matrix, Rodimus is forced to face down his fears once and for all when the Decepticons began a series of attacks on Japan. Being overwhelmed by the different responsibilities of leadership, Rodimus joyrides and is attacked by Stunticons; Dead End and Wildrider, losing the Matrix in the process, which is acquired by Scourge. Rodimus becomes Hot Rod once more. Scourge is enhanced by the Matrix and leads another attack on Japan. Counselled by a human martial arts master, giri, Rodimus realizes that the Matrix was his burden to bear; battling Scourge, he recovers the Matrix and resumes his role as leader. Lastly when Optimus Prime is resurrected, Rodimus Prime was able to return to being Hot Rod.

In the 3-part finale to the American Transformers animated series, "The Rebirth", Hot Rod became a Targetmaster.

In the Japanese exclusive Transformers: The Headmasters storyline (which replaced the "Rebirth" finale in Japanese continuity), Hot Rod appeared as part of Optimus Prime's inner circle. When Galvatron and his Headmaster warriors launched a devastating attack on Cybertron, Vector Sigma was damaged, and Hot Rod was sent to Earth to retrieve the Matrix. Recovering it, he returned it to Prime, only to be surprised when the ghost of Alpha Trion once again reformatted him into Rodimus Prime to help Optimus. After Prime's second death, Rodimus once again took command of the Autobots. However, when Scorponok destroyed Vector Sigma, Rodimus decided to leave the war, and left Fortress Maximus in command of the Autobots.

Although Rodimus would leave the dying Cybertron to find a new homeworld in the Headmasters series, he returned in the pages of the Battlestars manga. Once again going by the name Hot Rod, he was now a Micromaster, and aided Star Convoy (the once again reborn Optimus Prime) in his battles against Super Megatron.

Transformers: Generation 2

In some European countries the Laser Rod known as Jolt was released under the name Hot Rod, although he seems to have no relation to the Generation 1 Hot Rod.

Transformers: Armada

Hot Rod is the Japanese name for the Autobot, Hot Shot in the Japanese version of Transformers: Armada. Both characters share similarities in alternate modes, personality and eventual new leader status of the Autobots until Optimus returned.

Transformers: Energon

Rodimus is a great military commander and a superior warrior, yet strives for peace and freedom. First at odds with Optimus Prime for his conduct of the war against the Decepticons, Rodimus eventually became Optimus' right-hand man and de facto commander of the Autobots when Optimus himself was unavailable.

Animated series

In the alternate universe of the 2003–2004 toyline and series, Transformers: Energon, Rodimus (lacking the "Prime" suffix in English, but still called Rodimus Convoy in Japan) was a great leader on Cybertron ages in the past and was viewed as a hero by many, including similar character Hot Shot. Desiring to escape the war that had consumed the planet, Rodimus departed Cybertron with a contingent of like-minded troops, most of whom settled on an alien planetoid and became the energon-mining Omnicons. Still, Rodimus continued on his journey with Prowl and Landmine, carrying the "flag of peace" from world to world.

At some point, Rodimus learned that the world known simply as Planet Q was under threat from the world-devourer, Unicron, but arrived too late to prevent its destruction. Years later, however, he encountered the planet's surviving ruler, Alpha Q, and sided with him in his plan to use Energon to regenerate and restore all the worlds consumed by Unicron – a plan that put him in opposition with Optimus Prime when they encountered each other once again. When Megatron succeeded in reactivating Unicron, however, Rodimus relented and submitted himself and his troops to Optimus Prime's command, and they were integrated into the main Autobot force as the battles continued to defend Alpha Q's successfully-regenerated worlds against the Decepticons.

Transformers: Timelines (Shattered Glass)

Timelines Rodimus is a BotCon 2008 exclusive recolor of Classic Rodimus in black that is based on Black Rodimus. An evil alternate version of the Generation 1 character, according to the comic writers his personality is based on Vinnie Barbarino from the TV series Welcome Back, Kotter, using variants of Vinnie's famous put-downs. His new appearance has inspiration from the facial hair of parallel universe Mister Spock from the Star Trek episode "Mirror, Mirror".

Although Rodimus plays the part of the brash youth, he is actually very intelligent, and has no loyalty to Optimus Prime; only his own personal gain. According to his biography, Rodimus used to be leader of the Wreckers, a mercenary group hired by Optimus Prime; but after the deaths of the other members, he joined the Autobot Seekers under the command of Goldbug.

Transformers Animated

Rodimus Prime/Minor is a character who appeared in season 3 of the Transformers Animated series. He is a homage to the Generation 1 version of the character Hot Rod. He wields an energon bow-and-arrow weapon of his own design.

Actor Judd Nelson, who originally voiced Hot Rod/Rodimus Prime in The Transformers: The Movie reprised his role as this character.

Rodimus leads an Autobot crew consisting of Red Alert, Ironhide, Hot Shot and Brawn called Team Athenia.

Animated series

Rodimus was seen in the season 3 "Transwarped" special, leading his team in defending a Space Bridge from Strika's "Team Chaar". His team was overwhelmed, and Rodimus is infected with Cosmic Rust, courtesy of Oil Slick, putting him out of commission. According to Derrick J. Wyatt, Rodimus is back on Cybertron de-rusting. He can later be seen on Cybertron cheering for Optimus Prime and his crew for defeating the Decepticons in "Endgame, Part II".

Transformers Cinematic Universe

Hot Rod finally appeared in the Transformers Cinematic Universe as a Steyr-Daimler-Puch 2000 truck, a Citroën DS and a Lamborghini Centenario.

In certain universes, he is also known as Rodimus Prime.

Films

In Transformers: The Last Knight, he is brother-in-arms with Bumblebee who he fought alongside with to foil the Nazi Party in World War 2. He speaks with a thick French accent due to being stuck in France for so long, much to his own embarrassment. He wields a special gun which can briefly slow down time. He is shown using it to hold off TRF soldiers as a distraction to help Cade, Vivian and Bumblebee escape and when he saves Cade and Vivian from falling during the films climax. He is also the only Transformer who is shown to speak in vehicle mode.

Transformers: Prime

Rodimus appears as an unlockable character in the Nintendo DS version of Transformers: War for Cybertron.

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